Friday, February 7, 2014

Jiddu Krishnamurti and Self Responsibility

You are not at the whim of others.

As the problems of life mount and the disappointment in who you are and have become becomes more glaring, the natural tendency is to find blame.

Where have we gone wrong?

How did it come to this?

What happened to us?

And as the obstacles in life grow ever more numerous, and only more difficult to overcome, we begin to believe that they control us; that if not for these things, or those people, we would be different. We would be better, and happier, and more successful.

And as we place blame elsewhere, so do we place our hopes. We begin thinking that we must wait for certain things to pass and certain conditions to exist. We put our expectation of salvation at some distant time when we'll be "ready" or more "prepared". We tell ourselves that things will be better when the boss sees our skills and abilities, when our partners learns to appreciate us, when God sees fit to bless us.

The 20th century philosopher J. Krishnamurti once said the following:

"You cannot depend upon anybody. There is no guide, no teacher, no authority. There is only you, your relationship with others and with the world. There is nothing else. When you realize this, it either brings great despair, from which comes cynicism and bitterness, or, in facing the fact that you and nobody else is responsible for the world and for yourself, for what you think, what you feel, how you act, all self-pity goes."

When one sees - finally and conclusively - that they alone are responsible for their lives, the realization is often one of fear. To be on your own - to be alone - is indeed scary.

When one places the blame for their life elsewhere there comes with it a strange comfort that they are safe - from their decisions and from their responsibility. They are able to live believing that their existence and happiness is not their burden, but simply something random and uncontrollable.

But to discover the opposite - while scary - is also liberating. You are free finally of the attachment to the choices and whims of others, and at last the master of your life. And in this life there is no room for self-pity, for the idea that your problems are the result of someone else.

You and you alone are responsible.

You and you alone are culpable.

You and you alone are able.

From you comes everything, and from you will come everything.

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